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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

Walter Savage Landor 1775-1864 John Bartlett

    Rose Aylmer, whom these wakeful eyes
  May weep, but never see,
A night of memories and of sighs
  I consecrate to thee.
          Rose Aylmer.
    Wearers of rings and chains!
Pray do not take the pains
  To set me right.
In vain my faults ye quote;
I write as others wrote
  On Sunium’s hight.
          The last Fruit of an old Tree. Epigram cvi.
    Shakespeare is not our poet, but the world’s,— 1
Therefore on him no speech! And brief for thee,
Browning! Since Chaucer was alive and hale,
No man hath walk’d along our roads with steps
So active, so inquiring eye, or tongue
So varied in discourse.
          To Robert Browning.
    The Siren waits thee, singing song for song.
          To Robert Browning.
    But I have sinuous shells of pearly hue
Within, and they that lustre have imbibed
In the sun’s palace-porch, where when unyoked
His chariot-wheel stands midway in the wave:
Shake one, and it awakens; then apply
Its polisht lips to your attentive ear,
And it remembers its august abodes,
And murmurs as the ocean murmurs there. 2
          Gebir. Book i. (1798).
    Past are three summers since she first beheld
The ocean; all around the child await
Some exclamation of amazement here.
She coldly said, her long-lasht eyes abased,
Is this the mighty ocean? is this all?
That wondrous soul Charoba once possest,—
Capacious, then, as earth or heaven could hold,
Soul discontented with capacity,—
Is gone (I fear) forever. Need I say
She was enchanted by the wicked spells
Of Gebir, whom with lust of power inflamed
The western winds have landed on our coast?
I since have watcht her in lone retreat,
Have heard her sigh and soften out the name. 3
          vBook ii. (1798).
    I strove with none, for none was worth my strife;
  Nature I loved; and next to Nature, Art.
I warm’d both hands against the fire of life;
  It sinks, and I am ready to depart.
          Dying Speech of an old Philosopher.
Note 1.
Nor sequent centuries could hit
Orbit and sum of Shakespeare’s wit.
Ralph Waldo Emerson: May-Day and Other Pieces. Solution. [back]
Note 2.
See Wordsworth, Quotation 160.

Poor shell! that Wordsworth so pounded and flattened in his marsh it no longer had the hoarseness of a sea, but of a hospital.—Walter Savage Landor: Letter to John Forster. [back]
Note 3.
These lines were specially singled out for admiration by Shelley, Humphrey Davy, Scott, and many remarkable men.—Forster: Life of Landor, vol. i. p. 95. [back]